Betfair's Darts man Wayne Mardle casts his eye across the candidates for this week's UK Open...
"This event is normally won by the player who can remain consistent throughout; Robert Thornton was the one last year and he has the chance of doing some real damage again. That said, I think my money will be on Kim Huybrechts and Raymond van Barneveld."
Here's a look at the possible winners of the UK Open and best bets for the event that starts on Thursday in Bolton.
First up, Raymond van Barneveld loves this event, he's a former winner who seems to thrive in this format - an open draw. Seeds do come in at the third round stage but will still have to win six matches to be champ. Barney won't be perturbed by that and is a massive runner. He's playing well and when he's on form he generally wins.
Phil 'The Power' Taylor incredibly comes in at the first round stage, and never has he found qualifying for this event so tough. That said, he's still the one the other players will want to avoid for obvious reasons. Last year's runner up will be looking for a win, and anything else will be seen as a failure.
Next up is Michael van Gerwen, and my goodness, the way this man is playing it's hard to see him getting beat at all. The format at the start of the event is best of 11 legs so upsets can happen but I expect the favourites (Phil 'The Power' Taylor, Van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld) to progress without too many problems.
For an outside bet, there are a few that I'll be having a small punt on, the main one being Kim Huybrechts. He's a man who plays better on the big stage and with his silky smooth throw he can keep winning without expending too much energy, and believe me when I say this is an energy sapping event, four days of fierce competition.
This event is normally won by the player who can remain consistent throughout, Robert Thornton was the one last year and he has the chance of doing some real damage again. That said, I think my money will be on Kim Huybrechts and Raymond van Barneveld.
Back Kim Huybrechts at 36.035/1
Back Raymond van Barneveld at 15.014/1